Winter Weather conditions cause several road closures

Posted: Updated:
WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) -

Big changes have arrived in KAKEland as a strong area of low pressure tracks across the Central Plains.

High temperatures ahead of a cold front push the mercury into the 70s and 80s for North and South Central Kansas while temperatures tumbled for Western Kansas.

All Tornado watch warnings have been cancelled across KAKEland.

In northwest Kansas, rain started falling during the morning hours and gradually sagged south as we approached midday. The rain then began changing over to snow in Northwest Kansas.

Because of winter weather conditions, the Kansas Department of Transportation closed the following highways (as of 6:30 CDT):

  •  K-27 from Goodland to Wheeler
  •  U.S. 36 junction to the Nebraska state line, and U.S. 36 from St. Francis to the Colorado state line. 
  • Interstate 70 is also closed from Goodland west to Colorado. Check road conditions here.
  • U.S. 83 from Oberlin to the Nebraska border 

Meanwhile, a strong southerly wind and low relative humidity create another dangerous fire scenario across South Central Kansas. 

During the evening and overnight the rain will change over to all snow and track east with the heaviest snow likely along and north of Interstate 70. As the snow falls, wind gusts over 50 mph will create blizzard conditions across Northwest Kansas. While snowfall accumulations will not be extreme, the combination of wind and snow will create very low visibility and dangerous travel conditions Friday afternoon through Saturday morning.

Snow will exit KAKEland Saturday morning with a 2 to 5 inches across extreme Northwest Kansas. Locally higher amounts will be possible in Northwest Kansas. Snow totals will taper off dramatically with a half inch to up to 2 inches for the rest of Northern Kansas. Snow accumulation south of Interstate 70 will be extremely slim.

Expect treacherous driving conditions in the snow zone Friday evening through Saturday. Untreated roads could turn slick and low visibility is to be expected. The majority of the snow should melt off Sunday into Monday as high temperatures climb back into the 50s and 60s.

In addition to the snow, cold air will flood the state with highs on Saturday in the upper 30s to middle 40s. Morning lows Sunday will cause headaches for those who have planted cold sensitive plants with temperatures dipping into the low to middle 20s.

We’ll keep you up to date with our Interactive Radar and LIVE weather coverage. Get those features and more on the free First Alert Weather App. With the app you can track storms in your area, stream the latest forecast videos and live severe weather coverage, and set customized alerts to keep you and your family informed and safe.

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Check out these photos from across KAKEland snapped by our viewers, staff and local officials. Do you have pictures to share with us? Email them to news@kake.com.

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